On the other hand, “Mammon is the system of civilized life which organizes itself without any consideration of God”, popularly known to us today by its modern name…Progressivism!
“No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and (Progressivism).” ~ Luke 16:13
In happier and simpler times, we made light of our dilemmas e.g., My mother-in-law driving off a cliff in my brand new Corvette. I’ll never forget the wisdom imparted to me by one of my many spiritual teachers after my confessing to feeling perplexed over what I described as an inner tug-of-war around my love of a good drink. “The tension of inner conflict (dilemma)”, he told me, “is a springboard to God.” Think of this wisdom in nature. Think of the friction that it takes to create the pearl. And, of course, man is the only creature on the planet who can literally awaken to and through the friction of his own dilemma! It is both a curse and a blessing, is it not? The Chambers quote above IS the essence of the meaning in Psalm 23; The Lord is my Shepherd I shall not want…just as it is the key to the earthly lure and broader appeal of Progressivism.
The greatest irony of all ironies we will, every soul, realize after the fact; Only God can set us free, whilst his earth-bound opposition can only design and cast more clever nets for us! This is why fasting is such an important spiritual tool. It is one of the greatest strengthening exercises for breaking the chain of want…which in the simple act of doing brings us closer to God (freedom)…as does seeking the quieter voice in “the still waters.” But how can I BE in this world, and shrink myself for the “Narrow Gate”? Ah, that is our sweetest dilemma!
“Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few.” ~ Matthew 7:13-14
I’ve always loved Churchill’s quote about Americans always doing the right thing…after they’ve tried everything else. Butch and Sundance only jumped when they knew they had no other choice. Wouldn’t it be swell if we could know the right way before our back is to the wall, and we’ve become so hopelessly attached to the wrong (easy) way? Talk about dilemma…how many souls have perished in their own house fires because they couldn’t leave their possessions? Far too many to count! And technology has brought us attachment on steroids!
So, here are some mental exercises to help you know. Imagine if it were metaphysically possible to collapse the wall of time as a 62-year-old today, so you could actually meet face-to-face with your 25-year-old self of yesterday! How would that meeting go? I’ll tell you exactly how it would go. If you have stayed true to your inner voice and conscience, it will be a wonderful meeting of old friends. But to the extent life has led you astray from your own voice to replace it with another, the meeting will force you to tears…realizing what you’ve abandoned and lost. There is no amount of wealth and treasure that can sooth this pain. But if you could know this pain now dear friends, you would jump so fast to run from your own burning houses, leaving it ALL behind, the collective whirlwinds in your wakes would extinguish every raging fire on earth!
And if that’s not enough, try this knowing on for size. If the “Lord I shall not want” would lead me “beside the still waters”, where oh where would the Progressive Pope who hides the Truth of Calvary behind his sash lead me?
The hardest hurdle in the entire world is clearing the fence (narrow gate) that separates us from the Shepherd we shall not want! And “those who find it” are the prophesied “few”, made fewer by the devil at the gate holding a great mirror to capture and sell us our own reflection as everything there is to know! By stripping away the other side of the fence in the most devastatingly diabolical move of all time, the father of Progressivism has (so he believes) erased dilemma (Truth) from the human condition and experience.
But hiding is not eliminating that which cannot be eliminated. And oppressing and suppressing the same only energizes the object, as any student behind the science of “Old Faithful” will tell you. The Pharisees thought they could eliminate their problem by killing Jesus, and look what happened to their plan…
The modern day Pharisees killed a man week-before-last in Oregon hoping to eliminate their problem as well. I did not know Robert “LaVoy” Finicum before then. I met him in this twenty-nine-minute video where he introduced himself, his daughter and his dog and went on to speak from his heart about all WE have and are about to lose. He said something that really caught my ear when he talked about sitting down with his County Sheriff to “take a measure of the man”. Pease watch here to catch the perfect measure of LaVoy Finicum five months before he died. And here again, recorded the day before he was killed. I know him now…do you?
I’m a Finicum Man
I’m a Finicum Man by the things I do, the God I love, and a heart that’s true. Tall in the saddle, straight in the wind, I’d ride into hell and back again… For the land I love, her liberty to secure, great pain and sorrow is mine to endure.
I’m a Finicum Man til the day I die. Until last call, I will hold up my end… For the family that needs me, for my neighbors and friends.
I’m a Finicum Man til the Lord calls me home… the last roundup bell, and new pastures to roam… to my last dying breath, when they lay me to rest… I’m a Finicum Man looking after you. ~ CM 2/6/16
Chip, I am not a Finicum Man at all. The fellow had a big heart for truth…yet was a staunch Mormon, which cult preaches bizarre, execrable things about God the Father, about Jesus His Son, soteriology, anthropology, and history. Truth cannot be thus compartmentalized, however a fellow may love ‘his’ land.
I realize this is a harsh thing to say about this fellow who so recently committed suicide-by-cop; but having read Mr. Finicum’s novel, I suggested that this was indeed the case in Oregon. No sane, God-fearing, righteous person would drive to another state with a group of Bundy Jumpers and literally beg armed thugs to “Just shoot me! Shoot me right here!” (Pointing to his head)…”Do it, right now! Shoot me!”. But the Mormon author of the novel, ‘Only by Blood and Suffering’ probably thought it was as good a way to go as any.
Constitutionally speaking, there was nothing to be gained by either of the Bundy Jumping exercises (2014 or 2016) but in the providence of God, we can learn lessons from both debacles. I pray that America will have FEWER ‘Finicum Men’ as we learn lessons from the regnant follies.
Thanks for commenting David. Except for Islam, which I consider to be a political ideology masquerading as a religion of peace, I respect the individual search for God’s Truth in all men. I see LaVoy as a truthful man who loved his country and stood up for what he believed…in the way he felt he had to. America could use a few more Finicum…AND Zuniga men! In my humble opinion….